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U.S. Player Ratings
by Ridge Mahoney, August 13th, 2009 7AM

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[MEXICO-USA] Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney grades the U.S. players in their 2-1 loss to Mexico Wednesday at Azteca Stadium.

MEXICO-USA (2-1)
U.S. PLAYER RATINGS
GRADE PLAYER (CLUB) GP/G

STARTERS
5 Tim Howard (Everton/ENG) 44/0
Solid save stopped Giovanni Dos Santos at the near post in the first half. No chance on first Mexican goal, but failure to challenge allowed Miguel Sabah too much time to fire into the roof of the net.

6 Steve Cherundolo (Hannover 96/GER) 54/2
Left stranded often against Andres Guardado and Cuauhtemoc Blanco and usually defused the danger. Passed accurately out of pressure several times.

7 Oguchi Onyewu  (AC Milan/ITA) 48/5
A monster in the air and on the floor. Deftly stripped attackers of the ball and repelled anything that dropped into his vicinity. A step slow to react on Sabah's goal when the ball bounced right to the Mexican forward.

5 Jay DeMerit (Watford/ENG) 16/0
Stepped forward to play as a stopper at times, which disrupted Mexico's attacks but occasionally left a hole. Tripped Guardado and received a caution when he came over late to help Cherundolo defend a two-v-one.

4 Carlos Bocanegra (Rennes/FRA) 70/11
Won his share of balls and also gave a few away with bad passes. Mistimed jump on cross in first half permitted Giovanni Dos Santos to blast away at point-blank range.

4 Ricardo Clark (Houston Dynamo) 24/1

Tackled and moved well for most of the first half, elected to mark an opponent and left a big hole when Israel Castro hammered in his shot.

5 Michael Bradley (Bor. M'gladbach/GER) 34/6
A good game overall but left the middle open on giveaway that Mexico exploited. Played ball that Donovan relayed to Davies for U.S. goal.

4 Clint Dempsey (Fulham/ENG) 57/16
Dropped back to win balls and help keep possession, but contributed little to the offense. Switched the point of attack in first half to start an attacking sequence.

5 Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy) 116/41
Great pass to set up U.S. goal for Davies, served consistently on corner kicks and free kicks, ill-advised dribble in own half resulted in turnover from which Mexico produced its first goal. Beaten for pace by Efrain Juarez when young Mexican set up the winning goal.

6 Charlie Davies (Sochaux/FRA) 14/4
Took his chance to score excellent goal, battled for balls in midfield yet seldom found the opportunity and space to test Mexico again. Threw himself at balls on set plays.

4 Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo) 42/11
Drew a couple of free kicks by holding balls under pressure. Otherwise failed to unhinge Mexico's central defense other than on set play that produced a headed clearance for a corner.

SUBSTITUTES
5 Stuart Holden (Houston Dynamo) 6/2
Brought his rugged energy to the fray and set up a good opportunity with a decent cross.

4 Benny Feilhaber (Aarhus/DEN) 24/2
Bypassed when the U.S. got the ball and not a factor defensively.

3 Jozy Altidore (Hull City/ENG) 17/7
Chased the game from the moment he stepped on the field and never caught up.

(1=bad; 5=average; 10=brilliant.)



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